Update: Addition to “What to do if…” site: Evictions


Hi Blog. New update to the site:

…you are being threatened with eviction from your apartment.

With the NOVA Inc. Eikaiwa Debacle, I’ve been getting quite a few questions from people who are finding out their employer isn’t paying their rent for corporate housing, much less their salary. It’s getting tough to answer each person individally (I get dozens of general questions every week), so let me add to the What to do if… artery site for one-stop shopping.

Here’s I’ve put up at

…you are being threatened with eviction from your apartment.

Tenants have extremely strong rights in this society, which means that if you signed a contract, you are entitled to stay, even if you haven’t paid your rent for a stretch of time. You can even sue (and win) if your landlord changes his or her mind after a contract is signed and money paid. Stand your ground. You cannot be evicted without a court order.

This situation has come up in the context of the NOVA Eikaiwa School Debacle, where the company has not paid rents on company-provided apartments and the poor employee has had to face eviction, but stand your ground. Advice from those in the know:

1) [With NOVA Inc.] deducting rent from your paycheck, but not forwarding it on to your landlord, Nova broke the law. They are in the wrong, not you. Your landlord can complain, but his contract is with Nova. Keep your pay stubs and any receipts you have. Legally, you’ve been paying rent. If the landlord changes your locks, removes anything from your apartment, or harrasses you without going to court and getting a court order for your eviction, he is in the wrong. He can give you all the letters he wants, but he needs a judge to evict you. Grounds for eviction are normally illegal activity in the apartment or non-payment of agreed rent obligations. This is why you should hang on to your pay stubs – just in case things get ugly and you have to fight your eviction.

2) Accommodation: “Even if the owner/the landlord/the agency is screaming at you to get out, you don’t have to leave– just keep paying your rent. If the company was supposed to be paying the rent and they haven’t, sue the company for fraud or tell the agency: ‘Look, the company’s supposed to be paying, and I’ve already paid the company.’ You have a right of residency, and anyone who wanted to get you out is going to have to get a court order to do it.” (Bob Tench, Nova union vice president)


As ‘eikaiwa’ giant plans school closures amid credit crunch, some fear the worst
The Japan Times, Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2007
(Referential information at the bottom of the article)

Korean Woman Wins Discrimination Damages in Japan
Chosun Ilbo, South Korea, October 5, 2007

Plus, various extraneous bits of advice from people in the know courtesy of the Japan Times, September 25, 2007, regarding union support, unpaid wages, Immigration/Visas and employment, redundancies, and unemployment insurance.

Arudou Debito in Sapporo

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